A brave blood cancer patient has hailed the success of a major Sheffield Hospitals Charity appeal to fund groundbreaking research, which may one day find a cure for the devastating disease.
Supporters, fundraisers, patients and doctors all came together for an event to celebrate reaching the appeal’s initial £90,000 target to fund new research into fighting the cancer for which there is currently no cure.
Fundraising bosses now want to raise a further £50,000 to discover new ways to eliminate myeloma cancerous cells and test new drugs that doctors believe will help to accelerate the arrival of new and effective treatments.
Myeloma sufferer Jaqui Copley has been at the forefront of the campaign, raising thousands of pounds with her army of supporters, who see her as a true inspiration.
She said: “Myeloma is a very difficult cancer to come to terms with. As well as the fear of the unknown and the rigorous treatments I have faced, because it is incurable, there seems to be no hope at times.
“The thought that Myeloma is incurable is constantly hanging over your head – and the only way you get through this is by having the love and help of people around you, a strong medical team to rely on and a charity that is behind you all the way.
“Finding a cure is at the forefront of my hopes and wishes for the future. This appeal has given me, my family and friends and other Myeloma Warriors one of the biggest gifts of all - hope for the future.”
Dr Andrew Chantry is the consultant leading the ‘anti-myeloma virus project’ with the Sheffield Myeloma Research Team. He said: “I am bowled over by the kindness of local people who have donated so generously to this Appeal. These funds will allow us to develop this highly promising viral treatment for myeloma.
“The project we are focussing on uses a genetically engineered virus to target and kill cancerous myeloma cells. The project has used a genetically engineered virus to target and kill the cancerous myeloma cells without affecting healthy cells.
“Initial results have been promising, but there’s still plenty of research to undertake in this area, and we are now working with Sheffield Hospitals Charity to raise more money to fund additional research projects.”
To find out more about the research or to donate funds to support it visit www.sheffieldhospitalscharity.org.uk/curemyeloma